Why Staying Silent Can Cost You

I’ve noticed an interesting phenomenon in blogging. Over time, my number of unique visitors has increased, but the number of people leaving comments hasn’t gone up in the same proportion.

From time to time, I’ll chat with people via an email or twitter and discover they follow my blog but have never left a comment. Or occasionally someone will leave a comment and say something like, “I’ve been reading your blog for a while, and this is the first time I’ve commented.”

I’m sure the reasons vary from person to person for why they don’t leave blog comments. But to satisfy my curiosity, I decided to take a Facebook poll.

Here were the choices in answer to the question “If you read blog posts and do NOT leave comments, what's your MAIN reason for staying silent?”

• Have nothing new to add to what others have already said

• Too busy/Not enough time

• The post didn't resonate/wasn't engaging enough

• Too many comments already/blogger seems untouchable because of popularity

• Don't know much about the subject

• If I read, I always comment

• Too shy to comment

• Prefer reading blogs for information rather for socializing

I thought for sure the main answer would be that people are just too busy. But I was surprised to discover the top reason the majority (48%) of people don’t leave comments is because they have nothing new to add to what others have already said. Only 17% answered that they’re too busy. (Hop over to my FB page, scroll down to check out the rest of the results, and make sure you click on the question itself to see all of the options.)

Not commenting because of lack of time is one thing—it can be a valid excuse. But if we have time and don’t comment because we have nothing new to say, that’s another issue altogether. It’s an excuse I would encourage all of us to toss out and here’s why:

We’re writers. It’s our job to find things to “say.”

Blogging is a great way to hone our writing skills, learn to write tightly, and get initial feedback on our writing. When we write our posts AND comments, we learn how to think quickly, formulate our thoughts coherently, and share our opinions succinctly. All of that practice can translate over into our books.

Besides, if someone else has already left a comment saying what we would have, then it’s great practice for us to find a way to put a new spin on the thought, delve a little deeper, and add our unique twist. Once again, the practice can help us in doing the same in our books.

In the blogging world, it’s okay to keep our comments simple.

When a post hits home, bloggers tend to leave longer comments—which is great and I love when that happens. But just because the post resonated with some people and they pour out their hearts into their comments, doesn’t mean everyone has to leave a long comment every time.

In fact, sometimes it’s okay to say just a few words, to keep it brief, and to say something like, “I agree” or “Thanks for the tips.” Of course, it’s ideal when a blogger can pick out something specific within the post to comment about. But most of the time it’s better to say something small, than to say nothing at all, because . . .

When we don’t join in the discussion, our silence could hurt our blogging efforts.

If we're actively trying to build up our blog followings, then neglecting to comment could hurt our efforts. When we leave a comment, we’re spreading our social presence. Others will begin to see our names and pictures around cyberland. Not only does the blogger get to know us, but other commenters will begin to recognize us and our names as well.

Many times, those bloggers will reciprocate visits and followings. When they see us often enough, they may follow the comment link back to our blogs (which is why it’s important to leave your link within your username!) Early in my blogging career, I found leaving comments to be one of the best ways to meet new people and gain new followers.

My Summary: If we’re actively seeking to build our platforms and broaden our online presence, then staying silent on social media sites is NOT the best strategy. Instead, we should look for ways to get off the sidelines and join in the discussion. We make our names more visible, people begin to recognize us, and we get to know others more personally.

What about you? If you don’t leave blog comments, what’s your main reason from those listed above? And if you do comment regularly, how has commenting benefitted you?


  1. I comment as much as I can. And if I don't it's because I don't have time. Sometimes, in these cases, I will read without chiming in, purely because I'm interested in the article. This is very rare, however.

    I don't understand, either, Jody, why people blog but not leave comments. I was thinking this yesterday when I realized my average page view PER DAY is 600! I was in shock. Most of the time only 15-25 out of these people chime in. It is certainly weird, in my opinion. Of course, some of those views could be from people who don't have blogs and are reading for the sheer pleasure of it.

    Do you know how many non-bloggers read your blog? I'd be interested to know. I have no idea how to go about finding that info, though :-/

  2. I comment as much as I can, especially on my favorite blogs.

    I don't get it either, because my page views are going up and my followers are moving up, and yet my last two posts have had no comments. One was just a quick post about the dog, but the other was about my daughter dealing with storms, and I was really hoping for some feedback. I'm trying to blog about things other than writing, but I guess that wasn't a good topic.

    Still learning!

  3. Goodmorning, gals! Thanks for chiming in this morning! :-)

    Jessica, that's fantastic that you have that many people reading your posts per day! I know I have non-bloggers who read my blog becasue occasionally I get emails from them, or they leave "comments" on facebook in response to posts there. But I think the largest percentage of blog readers are bloggers themselves. I'm not sure how to find that out either, other than maybe taking a poll like I did on facebook or on your blog sidebar.

  4. This is an interesting post, Jody. I read many more blogs than I comment on, mostly because I don't think of anything I want to say or add. But then, when I'm in a face-to-face conversation, I usually do more listening than talking, too. Of course, online people don't you're reading/listening unless you post.

  5. I agree with you 100% on this. I'm always talking about the importance of interaction on my blog and it's amazing how many people comment. Then I publish another post a couple of days later that talks about personal stuff and receive a fraction of the comments (exception to the recent post!). I get people who say they love my blog but have never commented; people on Twitter who RT my posts but again they don't comment, and people who's blogs I read regularly, leaving comment after comment and never see them on mine. I don't check my stats so they may well visit, but why not at least say "hi, I'm here!" or words to that effect?!

    Comments are most definitely a large part of blogging. To me, I see little point pouring your heart out to the world if you can honestly say comments don't matter. If that were the case, you'd keep a diary under your pillow.

    Also, (I'll shut up in a minute!) Blogger have been messing about a lot recently and I'm finding a lot of people are using Blogger's commenting problems as an excuse not to comment. I actually find this rude. I know some people have been genuinely hit by Blogger's problems but I'm starting to notice a bit of a trend on Twitter where people are saying they can't comment and have tried several times.

    CJ xx

  6. I know what you mean-- I love getting comments on my own blog, so I always try to leave comments on others' blogs. Sometimes I really don't have anything to add to the discussion. But sometimes I leave comments on blogs, and then I get absolutely no response to my comment. As you say, it is a way to join a discussion, but if the blogger doesn't respond then it can't be a discussion. I understand that some blogs get too many comments so it's not logistically possible -- but I'm talking about bloggers who get at most 10 comments. If they don't respond it's a huge turn off!

    But truly, most often it's more of a matter of not having anything to add...just as I assume is true of people visiting my blog who don't leave comments!

  7. Wow! I'm guilty. I read many blogs and rarely leave comments, but my reasons vary. If I see a lot of comments, I tend to not chime in. If the blog post is too long and doesn't keep my interest, I stop reading.

  8. Mostly, it's lack of time. Trying to write and homeschooling is a juggling act. We get there:) I love your blog, so am now subscribed, definitely makes easier to comment. I try to react as it pops in my inbox.

  9. Hi Jody. My blogging activity comes and goes in spurts according to how much I have on my plate. I have a ton of blogs that I would love to read daily and comment on, but if I indulge in the luxury, I would be there for hours. I also have a blog of my own that at times is rather lacking attention. I am trying to figure out how to make this all work into a schedule that I can handle. I know that when I do comment on other people's blogs, I will sometimes get visitors to my own blog as a result, which is great and I believe that's how blogging is supposed to work. I think it's important to comment, even if it is just to encourage the blogger.

  10. I will admit, I read many posts that I do not comment on. Sometimes it's because of time constraints. I do notice that I will get new followers based on a reader on another blog following my profile over through blogger. So, it's nice when you see results from being active in social media, mainly because those are results from something you've said/written that resonated with someone. Which means I made contact with someone b/c of a common interest. I LOVE that.

  11. I agree with most of what you're saying, Jody. But I will say - one of my pet peeves is when people talk just to hear themselves talk. Sometimes, that can be the same with a comment. Sometimes, when I comment just for the sake of commenting, I bug myself!

  12. It depends. I always comment on blogs whose bloggers leave comment on mine. After that I might comment but not every time, so i can spend that time visiting new blogs and such. I totally understand that big bloggers with lots of followers can't comment on everyone's blogs! I totally get that. And I get when bloggers, like yourself, don't write the same age group as me so not all my posts are for all writers. I don't get offended easily.

    I think there are always lurkers!

  13. Well, if ever I feel strong armed into leaving a comment, it's now. LOL

    Thanks for the post, Jody. I normally wouldn't comment on a post like this simply because I'm a lot more passionate about writing than social media. Commenting really isn't something I put that much thought into. I find myself commenting when something in the post resonates with me. If the post doesn't impact, I normally stay silent, so the writing posts tend to draw my comments out more than the social media posts.

  14. I agree with all your points. Although the number of people viewing my blog does seem to rise every day it is always the same five people that leave comments. Thank you my small group of five I really appreciate you!! But when I work hard researching something I want to talk about on my blog and am really proud how it turns out it is then very disheartening when nobody or only one of my few faithfull leaves a comment. I have sometimes left an open question in my blog. But then feel like a real idiot when not one person answers. Please fellow bloggers, let us know we are appreciated.

  15. I have been reading your blog for awhile...;)

    For me, it's a matter of time mostly. I love commenting but sometimes I will just read an article for the information. But, I'm glad you did the poll because this is important information, not only for the reader but for the blogger. Perhaps we as writers need to make our posts more engaging. As the readers questions that they have to answer from personal experience.

    I don't always read the other commenter's replies so I'm not sure I'm repeating but that doesn't matter really.

  16. While I would be ecstatic if more than my usual one or two commenters would leave a note, it's not happening. And often I don't comment on any of the dozens of blogs I follow because, as noted, it's already been said.

    Then there's Hallie Ephron's note today: "Spoke at an event for book groups - When asked how many of these 100+ readers read blogs, about 6 hands went up." This makes me hope we concentrate on who exactly we're blogging for - our writing community, or our readers.

  17. I generally comment if I have something to say, which happens to be about 90% of the time. That's the whole point of blogging- to engage others and discuss/debate/empathize etc. Even a simple "great article" left on my own blog is enough to make me smile.

  18. Sometimes I skim and don't comment--especially if there are already a zillion comments. For me, I benefit from reading a good post, not making sure everyone knows what I think:)

  19. The biggest reason for me to not comment is that a lot of people have done so already. I worry that my comment will be lost in the list. Even the number of comments before mine here would normally intimidate me enough to move on without commenting.

  20. I don't comment as often as I should so I can't fault people for not commenting on my blog. Not commenting - often it's one of two reasons - I wasn't that interested in the subject matter or I was short on time, mostly the latter. And I know the last isn't any excuse at all. I should be blocking out time to visit my favourite bloggers. Thanks for the reminder that commenting is important.

  21. What you said about name recognition is spot on. For the blogs that I read regularly, even if I don't read all the comments, I recognize the names of repeat commenters.

    My main reason for not commenting is time. I rarely have time to read all the comments posted before me, and so I think "If what I have to say has already been said and I don't know it, I'm going to look foolish posting it."

    Even if there aren't many comments and I know I could post something new, I have to weigh the time it would take against my other responsibilities. As a full-time freelancer, it's very easy for the day to slip away with unpaid activities like blogs. It can be a dangerous situation for anyone who is self-employed.

    That struggle to find balance is one of the biggest challenges writers face, eh? :)

  22. Time is always my favorite excuse. You can ask my wife about that.

    I will scan the post titles in my reader and usually stop in if something draws my eye. If what I wanted to add has already been said, I might be tempted to leave without commenting.

    So, yeah. Guilty.

    But you reminded me of something that is critical from a marketing aspect. It's all about keeping the name out there. People can't see you if you don't speak up.

    So, yeah. Here I is.

  23. *raises hand* I admit I can be guilty of reading blogs but not commenting as often as I should. Sometimes I do feel I don't have anything significant to add, other times I may be reading on a subject I don't know anything about and therefore don't feel I have anything constructive to add. But Jody you are right and I will really keep these points in mind! :)

    Awesome post!

  24. This is why Blogger commenting issues have been driving me nuts. Commenting is huge for me, receiving and giving them.

    And I can always find something to say. When I don't comment, it's b/c something didn't resonate or I am too busy (something else took priority).

    Cool that you asked this and interesting results.
    ~ Wendy

  25. Hi Jody! Although I've considered starting a blog, I don't have one yet, so commenting to build a platform isn't as much of a consideration. I subscribe to quite a few blogs, including yours, via Google Reader. Often I read them in the viewing panel and don't actually go to the blog. Other blogs I come to through Twitter, and I often retweet blog entries that I find interesting and think will be helpful to my followers. Doing a survey to see whether the people who read your blog are other bloggers or coming to your blog from another source would be interesting.

    Thanks for all the great information you share!

  26. Hi Jody.

    Since the subject matter is on topic of comments, then here's my first. I have been following you for a while and...

    I'll let you finish the sentence!

    I hope you'll see more of me over here nowadays!

  27. Jody, I must admit that in your blog, I sometimes refrain from commenting because you have tons of comments already and I feel that my message will get lost. :-)

    For a long time I was very shy and didn't feel like I had anything new to add, but after leaving a few comments on different blogs, I felt more comfortable, and now I try to do it as much as possible.

    One of the things we're trying to do at the Sisterhood blog is go beyond a blog and create sort of like a forum, where people leaving comments will also talk to one another and expand on the subject. So far, it seems to be attracting readers. Many have said they like to read the "sisters" comments. But I'm not sure if other readers are too shy/uncomfortable at participating or feel like they're intruding on a private conversation (which is not the case at all. We love it when others contribute to the discussion.)

    Thanks for a very interesting post.


  28. If I read it, I usually leave a comment, even if it is just to say thanks unless the comment system that is set up isn't working properly.

  29. I like to support authors by commenting on their blogs and it's a wonderful feeling when they return the favor. For me it's often a time crunch when I don't leave a comment.

  30. Jody,

    I've written on this very topic a few times over at my blog. Glad you took the time to poll your network on Facebook. Very helpful information here. And telling, that number one reason.

    Some readers—smart and talented as they are—literally freeze up when they stare at that big old empty comment box. Others fear that they don't have anything to add to the conversation. And the ones who aren't professional writers (my audience is mixed) sometimes get hung up on grammar, sentence structure and generally just thinking out a cohesive response. (I know because they have told me.)

    But in my most recent post on this topic, I asked if other bloggers are seeing a decrease in comments. It seems like social media, as useful a tool as it is, has diverted some of the blog traffic. If you publish a snippet of your post, say, on Facebook, time-challenged people find it easier to "Like" it or post a short response there, rather than following the link to the full post and leaving a comment there. Same thing on Twitter. Just one of my theories.

    Thanks for this useful post. I'm saving this one. : )

  31. Not everyone who has a blogger profile blogs. I don't. But I use a blogger profile so that my name and pic appear when I do comment in consistent ways across social media platforms.

    I use Google Reader so I automatically get new posts from blogs I subscribe to. This morning I spent an hour spinning through 34 blogs, which is pretty typical. I think I follow around 50-60. I try to just read blogs once a day so it is not a time sucker. At less than 2 minute per, no, I did not read and absorb every one, much less comment.

    And then if I think a topic is interesting and I might like to comment, my dilemma is whether I have to read the 30 or 50 comments before mine before I can chime in. Is the goal to have everyone talking to the blog writer or interacting with each other? Another instance of evaluating use of time.

    I read some blogs I know I will never comment on but they teach me something. Others have disappointed me over time, so while I might still scan them, I don't engage. The challenge is to keep finding blogs that do make me want to engage in discussion in authentic ways.

  32. I'm LOVING all of the comments today!! :-) Thanks for chiming in, everyone! I think it would be awesome if blogger got a comment system that either allowed the blogger to comment back specifically to comments or a "Like" function similar to Facebook. Then the blogger could go through and let commenters know they read the comment and appreciated them.

    I understand what some of you have said about your comment "getting lost" among all the others and not feeling "heard" when there are already a lot of other comments. Even though I don't have the time to respond individually to each comment, I ALWAYS read each one. Over time, I begin to recognize regular commenters.

    The other thing I like to do when I have the time is to email commenters back. But not everyone leaves their email within their link. This is something I would encourage everyone to do--make it as easy as possible for other bloggers to get in touch with you.

    Thanks again for adding to the discussion today! :-)

  33. I try to comment on all the blogs I read, although sometimes there truly IS nothing else to add, so I say "Thanks for sharing", to let the blogger know I appreciated the information.

    When I write my own blog posts, I try not to include EVERYTHING in the post, so I can leave room for commenters to add their viewpoints, and hopefully generate a discussion.

  34. Jody, I always leave comments because each post I read impacts me in some way, and I want the author to know that. Besides, it's fun!

  35. Jody, I think that number # reason is true! At least it is for me. I have to say though, if I don't comment I always tweet a good post (as I just did with this one!) So hopefully, spreading the word that way is valuable. WOW - on the number of comments on this post about not commenting ;)

  36. OK, OK, I'll leave a comment! ;)

    I read a lot of blogs every day, and maybe leave comments on about half of them. Time is an issue. I have no problem leaving comments on your blog, but on other blogs, I somehow have to go through the verification process *twice*, with the CAPTCHA and the "choose an identity" and the preview and it's just a big hassle.

  37. I'm new here, so this is my first comment on your blog. You hit the nail on the head -- commenting requires conciseness and, as writers, we need that. It's a great exercise!

    I love this place...!

  38. Alright, hand slapped :/
    Marcy Kennedy is my writing partner and often we tag team commenting on blogs. But honestly, if I have to sift through more than a dozen comments I'm moving on because I can't take half an hour to read the comments and add something meaningful to the conversation. Honest truth. Thanks for the post.

  39. This is a trend I have noticed not only on my own blog, but on many of those I follow. Personally, I blog to connect w/others. So not getting comments really bothers me. I make a point to respond to every one I receive.

    I have been told numerous times that social media is killing blog comments. And I find people often comment about a post of mine via Twitter. Which seems odd to me. If you had time to go to the blog and read the post, why not leave the comment there? I always try to leave a comment when I have read something. It doesn't have to be profound! :)

  40. Honestly, the biggest reason I dont comment on blogs is that many times there are so many comments already, it is just too overwhelming to try to read the blog and all of the comments. It makes a difference to me if it looks like people are actually discussing in the comments, or as often happens, just putting something up to have something to say.

  41. I've been reading your blog for a while, but I've only commented once or twice before . . . LOL!

    I didn't take your poll, but I'd add to the list. As some have said, I have commented on other blogs and found that my comments never merited a response. So I definitely have felt like my comments didn't add much to the conversation or weren't engaging.

    Some book bloggers only respond to their friends. Others seem to respond to no one. Some have checked out my blog; others have never reciprocated with a comment. I understand that professional writers don't have time to say much in response--tho' they invite us to comment. So I end up feeling pretty anonymous at their blogs. But I do follow you on twitter and appreciate all the great advice you share. Thanks for that! And, also, I loved your first book and am looking forward to your second. Blessings!

  42. When I don't comment, it's either that I've nothing of worth to relay or because it feels a bit self-serving to so.

  43. What a great post - so happy Twitter directed me here.

    I, too, have the "my post will get lost" issue and the "already been said" issue but my main issue is, as others here have said (!) not having enough time to sift through previous comments.

    I guess I would also ask the question: are comments really important? If people are reading my blog as they often tell me they are, does it matter whether they comment?

    The tree still falls in the forest, even if the noise it makes isn't being commented upon.

    hugs -

  44. Ha! You nailed it. I'm a really great commenter at most of the blogs I follow. I appreciate your posts and have learned a lot from them in the past few months but I often feel I have nothing to add to the conversation. This is a good reminder, that just as I'd like to hear when people like what I've written, I need to continue doing the same, even if it's just saying Thank you.

  45. I'll begin rather sheepishly by saying that I read (and enjoy) your blog regularly, but... :)

    Excellent points. Thanks.

  46. Hi. I've been reading your blog for a few weeks now, but have never commented before.

    I read because, as an un-published writer, I find your posts instructive. I don't always agree with your ideas about writing, but at minimum your posts usually provide good jumping-off points for internal reflection.

    On other blogs, I have noticed that jumping in too quickly often leads to a backlash. It's all too easy to start flame wars when you're unfamiliar with the blogger and her readers or if you don't really fit in (as an example, while I find your general writing advice valuable, I am also a foul-mouthed atheist fantasy writer). Since conflict makes me queasy, I've learned to approach blogging communities with great caution.

    I may very well not be the only one. I got here via a link on Chuck Wendig's Terribleminds blog to your "10 Simple Ways to Support Authors You Love" post. Chuck Wendig isn't much like you, and I don't think his readership overlaps with yours much. If that post was popular enough to reach such disparate groups, then it may have brought in several other readers like myself, who find value in your posts but don't consider themselves really part of your community. This issue, by the way, might not be uncovered by a Facebook poll, because readers like myself may not be connected to you on Facebook (I am not).

    I have no idea whether this theory is accurate, but I hope you find my perspective helpful.

  47. Ouch! This is the kick in the pants I need. You've debunked my 2 excuses, not counting TIME: afraid someone I know might read what I comment (I know, I know; stupid) and not rethinking, creating, or going deeper when someone's earlier comment mirrored my thinking.
    Thanks for the Monday morning energizer.

  48. I'll admit that I'm much more likely to retweet a link to a post I enjoyed than comment. For me, I comment when I have *time* to think of something to add, so I guess I'd be a combination of two answers. :)

  49. Well, I feel like I have to leave a comment now...

    This is a fantastic post, Jody! As a blogger, I know the joy that comes with each comment and the excitement of a discussion that follows a post.

    So it is important to do the same to other blogs!

    We're blessed with this unique form of communication and networking never before seen in our society. So we should make the most of it!

    Thanks for this gentle nudge of a post!

  50. Hi Jody,

    You're quite right, of course. I'll be honest - a lot of the time, after reading all the posts ahead of mine I can't think of anything to say! Bad writer, must try harder...

  51. I don't always comment on blogs that I follow. Bad, bad! I read for the information, but with work, family, and writing time thrown into the mix, my time is precious. If the blog has 3 posts per week or more. I try to comment 1 or 2 times. If once a week, I will comment.

    I have met some really great writers through blogs. I'm following some awesome authors who have tons of advice to give - present company included. I've learned a lot by reading posts and comments from other writers and agents. It's a great way to connect.

    Making time is the biggest problem for me. I'm working on it.

  52. Thank you for this! If I stop by a blog, I take time to comment, even if I have nothing earth quaking to share. I simply want the author to know I read the post most of all, and then I leave a little tidbit so they know how it helped me.

  53. How can I not comment after reading that post? Ok fine, I was actually SUPER tempted to continue my lurker ways... but this post really challenged me to comment more. I guess it's mainly an issue of habit -- I read blogs for years it rarely occurred to me to comment, so now it's hard to shift my way of thinking. Thanks for the reminder, though!

  54. Jody, thanks for the timely reminder. Occasionally if I don't think I can add to the discussion, I don't comment. From now on I will follow your advice.

  55. Great post!! I often don't post on blogs with a plethora of comments (like yours today...there were 53 before mine and normally I would not have left a comment!) because I do question if it is worth my time...can the blogger really have enough time to read THAT many comments and comment back??? And if I don't have anything profound to say, is it even worth it...just to say "Hey, great post!"

    But thanks for this...I will definitely post more comments! :)

  56. Interesting post, Jody, thank you. :-)

    I notice I often don't leave comments on blogs that have lots of followers and 50+ comments per post. I made an exception for this one, and I might do so again. ;-)

  57. Good points, Jody -- and point taken! I am one of the lurker culprits...and after reading your post, I will be making an effort to change my ways. Thank you for the kick in the butt! :)

  58. Lately, time has been an issue for me. I'd love more time to read blogs and add comments, but if I have to choose between writing and reading blogs, the writing wins. I try to read blogs in the mornings, but even then I don't always have time. Also, longer blog posts take more time to read, so sometimes I skip it and plan to go back later or I skim for highlights and don't comment. Someday when I'm a full-time writer, I'll be able to spend more time on social media and networking.

  59. It's really fun to "meet" blog readers today who haven't commented before! I'm really appreciating hearing all of the various perspectives for why people don't leave comments.

    One thing I've heard quite a number of people say is that they don't leave a comment because they don't have the time to read through all of the other comments. But I don't think it's necessary to read through them all. Sometimes I do, if it's a particularly interesting topic and I want to see what everyone else thinks. But, if we're short on time, we don't have to feel obligated to read other comments before leaving our own. Sometimes, that allows us the freedom to just say what we want, without worrying if we're repeating someone else.

  60. I'm one of those people who doesn't comment when there are a whole bunch of other commenters. For one thing, I don't have time to read all the comments to see if what I have to say has already been said. Also, I'm more likely to take the time to comment on newer or less visited blogs because I figure I'll make more of an impact, and I can give them a boost.

    But now that my blog is getting 50-60 comments on a post, I realize popular blogs need love, too. :-)

  61. Sometimes I get distracted or I don't have much time. You made a great point, especially since I've seen the benefit that commenting on other blogs gives in driving traffic to my blog. Thanks for the reminder!

  62. Thank you! Very well put. I was recently thinking of writing something similar on my own blog. I think another huge problem with this is that often, it is the critics that post all of the comments. Those who agree say, "that was nice to read," maybe 'like' it, and then move on. Sometimes writers can get confused because they only hear from the opposition. Even if the opposition is a small minority, it can be the only voice heard and really throw people off. If you agree with and support a certain point or effort, say so and say why. Thanks for bringing some more light to this.

  63. My issue is almost always the time factor these days. But I've seen the exact same thing on my blog--as my followers and hits increase, my comments stagnate or have decreased. It's weird.But your survey sheds some light on why.

    I think also sometimes the more popular a blog, the more people think you're not reading the comments anymore or that they're not important to you (which is totally untrue--I happily read every single comment i get.)

  64. I have way more people viewing my posts than commenting too and I just attribute it to not having enough time. Most of us have at least 100 feeds to read through semi-regularly. If you are a regular it is nice to comment anyway and if you are just a fellow writer calling in, you can decide if you want to spend that time connecting or not. For those who say they have nothing new to add, if they thought that quite often, then that would surely reflect back on their blog stats. All the comments I get are because I go to their blogs too.

  65. I rarely comment when there's more than a dozen or so comments on a page. I figure it's unlikely anyone will read that far down, so what's the point?

    I'd be interested to see what kind of response you'd get to "How many comments do you read on a blog post that interests you?"

    I'd suggest, unless the comments themselves are particularly tantalizing debate, most people read 2-3 then leave their own or move on.

  66. The reason that I don't generally leave comments is that a couple of years ago when commenting on a blog post by a friend of mine, he hopped down my throat for just repeating stuff that other people had already said. He also hates anything along the lines of "Read and Enjoyed, But No Comment"---a code "RAEBNC" that we both learned when we were both involved in amateur press associations (before the internet). So I find myself struggling to come up with something new to say. Ironically, the one blog I never learn comments on is his blog---something that he now complains about. *sigh*

  67. I'm guilty of this for multiple poll reasons. Sometimes I don't comment because I have nothing enlightening to say and I try not to write the boring parts (h/t to Elmore Leonard, LOL). Sometimes I don't comment because I really am short on time. And sometimes I don't comment because I'm reading blogs when I should be writing, and leaving a comment is like leaving guilty cookie crumbs all over my chin! :)

    I've started reading blogs (Jody, yours included) on my phone when I'm out, and those times, I have not yet mastered the art of mobile browsing with any effectiveness. Making a response with my usual wordiness just *kills* me. Hopefully, I'll get better at it, though. Thanks for a thoughtful blog post!

  68. The main reason I won't comment is because I cannot find anything good to say about the post, but this is rare. I like to leave a comment (even a short one) whenever I stop at a blog so that the blogger knows that I've been there.

    Occasionally I don't have time to comment, but if I lack time to comment, I probably haven't stopped to begin with...since I'm short on time...:)

    Interesting findings, Jody. Thanks for sharing them!

  69. I don't always comment, though I have made a point to do so more and more lately. I've also noticed that I sometimes get hits on my site from blogs where I have commented.

    I'd love to have more comments on my own blog--get that conversation going.

  70. Hi Jody,

    I've only recently discovered your blog and have commented once before (I think). Like everyone else here, by the time I discover your post via Twitter, so many others have commented that I don't feel I have anything useful to add. However, when I do read a blog from anyone, I usually try to respond.

    I think responding to blogs is a great way for others to get to know you. Plus, since I'm a soon-to-be first-time epublished authur, I can use all the recognition I can get while (hopefully) adding something interesting to the topic.

    Myself, I'm a slow blogger. I usually only blog about 2-3 times a month. I need to work on this because I'm sure it has reduced traffic flow to my site. Of those, I get very few comments like everyone else, but I teasure each comment and try to respond to make my viewers feel welcomed and appreciated.

    This is a great topic and I voted with the majority on your Face book poll. :)

  71. I'm usually crazy-busy so I don't leave comments. But you're right, we should join in the discussion. As always, great topic.

  72. Ok, I'm one of those lurkers. I've been reading your blog since September, at least. You were one of the first blogs I found that dealt with writing, so actually it must have been before September. Try August, or even July. The reason I don't comment? There are 72 comments on here already, and in there are authors that I also admire. I truly feel like I have nothing to add. Who cares what I think?

    Yes, I know, lacking in self-confidence, etc, etc, but I don't want to repeat what someone else has said, just with different words. It just makes me a sheep, someone who follows everyone else, thinks as they do. Boring.

    As you can tell, this hit home because it definitely applies to me. I love it when I get to comment first on a really popular blog. Happened for the first time ever today over at Kristen Lamb's blog. Made me feel like I wasn't just wasting my time.

    The really stupid thing? I don't care when I get twenty comments all saying more or less the same thing on MY blog. I care that I got twenty comments. *Sigh*. One day I'll get over it. Maybe today is that day :D Maybe not. But I'll keep trying :D

  73. Hello!

    I am a loyal blog reader, but rarely comment. I discovered your blog through Katie Ganshert (love her!). I don't comment because I'm shy, which is kind of weird when you think that blogging isn't even face-to-face communication. It's a vicious cycle because I feel like regular commenters have become a group of friends, and here I am, the newbie, trying to join in the group. So I opt to read blogs (and all the comments) and absorb as much as I can.

    Maybe I will start commenting more often :-)


  74. I suppose there's also a belief that if I'm the 100th person to comment, the blog auther may not get to my comment to read it!

  75. Unless I'm away from home, I ALWAYS read every comment. They come into my email stream and so I keep up with reading them throughout the day! So whether it's the 75th comment (katejenian!) or a comment three days later, I still read them and appreciate the input! :-)

  76. Interesting idea for a survey! I don't know if it's an IE issue or what, but half the time when I do try to leave a comment on a blog, the validation screen gets stuck and I give up. I've lost long, thoughtful responses that way.

    I suppose I could type them out in Word and do a copy/paste, but it doesn't seem worth that much effort. Maybe IE will fix their issues. :)


  77. I try to leave comments whenever I can. Time can be a problem though. The reason I like to leave comments is that when someone leaves a comment on my blog, I get so excited. It is like a special gift. I love to hear from my regular subscribers and am very happy when someone new comments. It is a great way to meet new people! This was a wonderful post, thanks.

  78. Great post, Jody! And because I'm extremely pressed for time today, I'll leave it at that. :)

  79. I love to give gifts. When I'm out shopping and see something that reminds me of a friend, I'll often purchase it, drop it in the mail, and hope the package brings a smile when the recipient receives it.

    I view blog comments as gifts. A person has taken time to share his/her thoughts. If I want to show my appreciation, I can do so by leaving a comment. A comment says I came, I saw, I care.

  80. I try to comment, and I have my favorite blogs. But time is my big issue, or a lack thereof. I just do what I can. Also, I want to say that I appreciate those who do come to my blog because I've left comments somewhere else. Makes me feel as if I might belong in the social sphere, after all

  81. Good post, Jody! I feel like you wrote it just for me. I often have a hard time making comments because I feel like I don't have anything to add. "Yeah, what she/he said!" I frequently find I am exasperated with myself -- I can write fiction, why can't I write comments on blogs, or emails or what-have-you? I have a mental block. Or maybe I'm a blockhead...


  82. I totally agree that people should be more vocal as bloggers and post when they read. However, I'm starting to get the feeling that most writers who blog don't care about building the network. They post things that are of no interest to anyone but themselves--really personal poems, or complaining posts that they have writer's block--which is fine. I totally think people should use whatever tools necessary to get the writing juices flowing. But it's kind of disappointing, at least to me personally, that all these writers are online but aren't interested in socializing.

  83. Well, it just seemed wrong not to leave a comment this time. :)

    Great post, as usual. Thanks, Jody!

  84. I actually do fall in that 17% that doesn't often have time to comment. I try to keep tabs on what my blogging friends are up to, but I'm usually grabbing a few minutes when it's slow at work, or before I sit down to another editing session.

    When I have the time and a post resonates with me, I generally do leave a comment. However, it's good to have a reminder of why I should do so--and why I should try to make the time.

  85. Great post! I've noticed there are lots of views on my blog but not too many comments.
    It seems like a number of writers prefer re-tweeting posts as a way to show support. I'm not sure if it's a faster way for them to say, 'good post' or if they subscribe to many blogs they don't have time to comment on every post on every blog they read.

  86. Many times I don't comment because the blog owner has been too restrictive about who they allow to comment. I hardly ever use my Google account, so when someone asks me to comment by signing into Google, I don't comment. Other blogs make me sign in, then do an OpenID, then a captcha, and I am pressing the darn "submit" button three times and it still doesn't work. Bloggers need to make it easier to comment. I realize there's a lot of spam, but too many locks to pick and I just go away...

  87. Okay, so you've guilted me into a comment today. ;) I have my favourite blogs compiled on Google Reader so I can quickly see which has a new post. I find it much more convenient to read them from there, too, and only when I want to comment do I click over to the blogger's site.

    I realize my choices mean my blogging friends don't always know I've read their posts, but I try to make it around to the different sites on a rotating basis, to say hello and let them know I've been appreciating their words. I treasure my online relationships but it's a balancing act to keep in touch with everyone and still find time for my writing.

  88. LOL! I've been guilted, too. I read a ton of blogs via Google Reader. I do a quick review of the ones I find interesting and the others I skim through.

    But even if I do like a post, I'm usually reading in a place where I can't really comment.

    So, I made myself remember to comment as soon as I came home from work today...

    I find it is way too easy to be a lurker. I need to "get out" more...


  89. Great advice! Everyone listen to Judy now. :)

  90. Hi Jody,

    First time comment on your blog. I enjoyed what you had to say and agree about commenting. It not only helps me but helps the person making the post-- Lets them know there are really people out there.

    I do post comments on blogs I read but one of my fears is: "What if I say some dumb or offensive?" As a novelist I can write and write but then I get to go over it 30 times to correct the work and then my wonderful editor really gets it right.

    When I comment I fear something will jump out of my mouth that I can't take back and I will lose the respect of potential readers. Even misspelling is a fear.

    Thank you for a great post and I will follow and comment-- if only to let you know I'm here!

  91. You've made a very good point, Judy, and although my reasons for rarely commenting are a combo of being so busy that I forget to make my comment and being overwhelmed by seeing 90 (!!!) comments already-- you are so right.

    I'm a writer. How can I have nothing to say?!

    I also learned recently the power of commenting. In just one comment on someone else's blog, I gained a great many visits to my own blog, two new commenters and a new subscriber. Just one comment did this. Imagine what I could accomplish by truly reaching out!

  92. How could I read this post and NOT comment :)

    I try to comment as much as I can, even if it's just a little something, but if I don't it's usually just because of time. I have a hard enough time keeping up with reading the blogs I want to, but at the same time I realize those people will never know I read if I don't comment.

    Good advice :)

  93. I agree. Thanks for the tips. ;)

    I took this poll and was really interested to see the results. Thank you for sharing them! I think they can help me blog better as well.

  94. Hi Jody - I usually comment when I read YOU (which happens not often enough, drat that time issue!)

    For myself, as a fellow blogger, I feel pressure to say something fun, witty, interesting. We writers all follow a lot of the same blogs, and for myself, there's a fear factor. What if someone sees my name and says, "Wow, seems like I've seen that name commenting all over the blogosphere, yet I can't think of a single interesting or funny thing she's ever posted." Which I know is silly, but sometimes I will make the choice not to comment if I'm sitting there, not able to think of something "good" to say, and read another blog instead.

    When I was using Blogger comments, I took off the word verify step, and that seemed to increase number of comments. However, then I installed Intense Debate - which I like, because it does let you "like" a post, tweet your comment, etc., and as the blogger I can reply directly to a comment in threads. Other people can chime in on threads as well, but I think the having to register and put in your name, etc., may discourage some commenters. I've put in the feature so that if somebody has even two "reputation points" they are automatically approved, not delayed, and rush like a madwoman approving comments for new people. I think other bloggers appreciate the "comment love" feature that automatically links back to their latest blog post. I would definitely prefer it to post everything first, and let me moderate afterwards.

  95. 95 comments in, exactly the kind of post I wouldn't let my presence be known on. But here is a hardy Hello.

  96. I started blogging only a few months ago, but I've noticed a lot of views with few comments too. It's frustrating, because I have very vocal friends! I haven't gotten to the Twitter phase yet, but try to visit and comment as I can. Thanks for an interesting post and here's hoping Blogger will behave itself.

  97. Nearly 100 post replies to this one Jody!

    I agree, i think even if it is a one line reply saying the same thing as the person before the comment is valid.

    It's not adding to the discussion as such, but the extra comment agreeing shows support to the idea and the author.

    Great post as always

    Sarah Ketley

  98. Hi Jody :)

    Well, it seems your article hit home, 98 comments before me :D.

    For me, the "do not have time" is not an excuse. If one has time to read an article, then he/she has 2 minutes to leave a comment.

    If I read a post, I almost always leave a comment, 99% of the times. Rarely, when I don't want to get involved in a debate or when my opinion is negative, I might not leave a comment.

    Thank you for the interesting post :)

  99. Well you hit me so I am commenting. I usually feel it has all been said; however, your comment about writers gave me pause. By the way, I found this blog through as my fellow blogger Laura mentioned it. Thanks. Clella

  100. I bet today will be your highest comment day ;)

  101. Lack of time combined with nothing to add combined with being #134 (so who will notice me in the crowd and click on my link, so why bother if I don't have anything to say) keep my commenting level relatively low. If I read six blogs, I will probably comment on two.

  102. Way to guarantee that EVERYONE comments! LOL.

    I sometimes go through "lack of confidence" phases when I fell like, well, how can I say this? Like I'm still the baby sister none of the big kids wants around. But you're right that other bloggers have helped me break this to a large degree when I keep up with commenting. I affirm them, and they affirm me.

  103. Why I don't always leave comments: TIME. If I have something to say (i.e. a longer comment) I'll take the time to do so. But if I don't have time, many times I'll just read it, nod my head, and go on. But that is because of time.

    I do TOTALLY agree about the value of leaving comments regarding building ones online presence! You did an AMAZING job of that Jody!

    On my own blog, I have some more comments, but it is greatly disproportionate (to the fewer end) to the number of views. I'm okay with that though, because my blog has morphed into something more personal and less "writer" related, so I have a LOT of non-bloggers that read it, and many don't have an account, or don't understand the whole comment thing, or just feel uncomfortable. And... they aren't writers, so building a presense doesn't mean anything to them. (could it be that you are attracting more of your non-writer readers too... thus the reason for fewer comments related to views?)

    I'm okay with that too. I felt God urging me to do that a year ago anyway, and I'm thankful I did. I have a group blog that I'm a part of where I write for "writers", but my personal blog is where I *hope* to connect more with readers AND writers (because obviously writers are readers too!) Right now, they are getting all Annabelle updates, but I hope that my heart shows through and I keep many of them well after it's not all about Annabelle anymore.

  104. I would modify the message here slightly by saying leaving GOOD and INTERESTING comments is the best way to meet new people and get your name out there. Leaving a comment that's just "Great Post!" isn't going to inspire any of the other readers to follow you back to your blog. So then there's a certain amount of pressure, that if I'm going to leave a comment I need to make it count.

    That said, I haven't had time to read blogs lately, never mind comment, and I have absolutely noticed that when I'm not reading and commenting other blogs, I get fewer readers and comments on my own.

  105. I'm leaving comment 105 here, :) because I so agree that writing comments can improve our own writing. I first discovered myself as a serious writer, when I formulated comments to the first blog I read regularly. It was written by a writer I am acquainted with and her posts touched me in ways I had to articulate. I wrote from my heart and through that process began to understand my own need compose words, and to hear my own voice. She no longer blogs. I miss her posts and remain grateful that she inspired me to pick up the proverbial pen. Thanks Jody. This was a thoughtful topic.

  106. Wow! This is my first comment EVER! Of course, that's just because I just started my own blog in late April and am just getting my feet on the ground regarding how to handle social networking (I know, I know, I'm way late). Anyway, Keli's comment regarding them being a gift is so true. I'm still waiting for my blog's first comments, although hundreds of people have viewed it. Now I understand better how that happens.

  107. If I've taken the time to read a blog I ALWAYS leave comments even if it is only a brief one. However, I have to say, time could be a factor... It took me a while to scroll down and read over 100 comments on this post!!!! Ha ha!
    At least you got more people to make comments that don't normally... Well done!!

  108. I'm going to jump in and say that I enjoyed this post. I agree that it's good to make your presence known, especially if you're a writer. Thanks for sharing your tips!

  109. I'm think you've covered this before, but I don't have time to search for it! I'm fine if you want to respond with a link on Twitter . . . but what do you feel is the blogger's role in responding to comments? I addressed this issue in my blog recently. I came to the conclusion that when I respond to comments, I do so with the email function so it shows up on my blog and on email. I know when I leave a comment (like now) I'm not likely to come back and look for a response because #1. many bloggers don't respond (I don't always either so that's NOT a dig!) and #2. Who has time to come back to the same post and scroll through all the comments and responses?

    I 100% agree that bloggers should leave comments for other blogger. Do you think if a blogger rarely responds that people stop commenting?

  110. Oops--meant to sign in with my wordpress account so you'd now who I am!

  111. Nina,

    Great questions! I think the questions actually deserve an entire blog post! I'll save your question and think about it and try to answer it more fully in a post at some point.

    But, here's my initial thought. If a blogger never interacts in the comments, we risk losing touch with our readers. I don't think big brand names need to interact to keep traffic. But those of us who are working at building our followings would be wise to jump in the conversations when we can. That will vary from blogger to blogger. Some might have the time to respond to each comment, others only jump in at questions or to occasionally chime in throughout the day. Whatever we choose, it has to work for us. Whether anyone comes back to read or not, future commenters see our participation and it affirms to them that we take our blogging comments seriously.

    Thanks for the questions! I'll be mulling them over some more!

  112. Hi Jody -- I don't comment very frequently, and one of the reasons is that I'm (usually) always behind on my blog reading. Though I know (as a blogger myself) that comments are always appreciated no matter when they come, since they act as a continuation of the discussion, I sometimes feel that throwing my two cents in days after the conversation has ended is kind of like the person who arrives at the party just as clean-up has begun and demands, "What did I miss?" of his exhausted hosts. I know it's not exactly the same thing, but just my thoughts on the subject. Interesting topic!

  113. Blogging is a great way to connect with other writers. I visit several blogs a day/week and generally leave a comment. One reason I won't leave a comment is if the blogger makes it too difficult to leave one. I avoid blogs that require blog owners approval before a comment will appear. I tend to leave comments on posts that are open-ended--ones ask questions or opinions from visitors.

  114. Wow! This inspired many comments. I'm guilty of skimming in reader and not clicking in to comment. And, it's true. If there are already over 100 comments, you feel like yours is less important.
    Of course, it's nice to leave a note to say thaty you've stopped by for a visit.
    One other thing, blogger sometimes has glitches that stop comments.

  115. Well, I see that I'm late to the party again.
    Any cake left?

    Seriously, though, this was a valuable post. I've often wondered about that abnomaly in my own traffic stats.

    I've noticed 115 comments on this post vs. anywhere from 30-60 posts, going back just a few weeks.
    Any chance I can translate what you've done here to getting my teenagers to mind? (Smiles)

    Double seriously. Thanks for all you do. Great blog.

  116. Holy Canoli, look at all of these comments! I want this many comments on my blog for sure! Great post and great poll. Love reading your blog and all of the insight you offer!

    Jenny Lee Sulpizio
    Author of "Mommy Whispers"

  117. Hi everyone who commented today! You're definitely not latecomers to the party! The party is ongoing here on my blog! In fact, I try to make a special point of responding to comments that come in late, just so that people know I'm still reading and appreciating their thoughts! :-)

    This comment did indeed draw out quite a few comments! And I love when that happens! I love getting to hear from everyone!

    But I also completely understand all of the reasons people have listed for not commenting too. It's been good to see the variety of reasons people stay silent! I've been enlightened even more! Thank you!

  118. Great post. I try to comment as much as I can? How else can you network and get people to know who you are and vice versa.

    <3 Gina Blechman

  119. It only took me 30 hours to get back to this post *headdesk*, but I made it! Being busy might be a valid excuse, but it still results in the same disadvantages as not commenting for any other reason.

    I have to admit that I was surprised by your results too. But the negative side of not commenting is a very real one. Building a following is difficult enough; we should do everything we can to get ourselves out there.

    Thanks for another terrific post...

  120. I do try to comment because I find it frustrating when I see that I've had visits but no comments and, as a new blogger, I'd really love feedback on my posts. If I don't comment it's usually because it's not the information I was after or I'm not sure what to say (or how to say it).

  121. I think you're very clever to take a FB poll. I don't know how to do that but I'd love to learn.

    I'm pretty new to the blogging world and starting very slowly. In January I began writing posts and reading other blogs. My goal was to get get over the fear of writing to an unseen public and get to know the social media neighborhood, the Internet. Encouraging others to leave comments was a puzzle to me. I ended the posts with a question but that made no difference.

    After visiting the neighborhood for a few months, I decided to buy a home and settle in. I found a web designer I liked, passed off the designing to her and began reading your blog to learn how to love my Internet neighborhood the best way possible. I visit others and invite them to my house too.

    I've written 10 or so posts so that when my web designer has completed my sites updated look I can start posting on a predictable schedule. The posts I've written ahead all end with a question. I did this hoping it would encourage readers to respond and know that I really am interested in their thoughts. Are there other ways to encourage readers that I really want to know what they have to say?

  122. I've always been shy about commenting because I don't want to waste people's time with my thoughts unless they're unique, original, and interesting, but I have found it to be a problem in following the advice of "comment to get your name out there." This post helps me realize that blog comment etiquette might not be the same as classroom seminar discussion etiquette. Thanks for the encouragement!

  123. Been a blog reader for 12 years. I think it's a combination of nothing new to say and time. It takes time to think of something new to say, even for writers. And when I read blogs, I move quickly.

    I think making time to read them is better than not getting the visit even if we don't leave a comment.

  124. I tend to comment quite a bit--but mainly on blogs with a smaller readership. When there are 25+ comments, it starts to feel like your voice is lost in the crowd, and the conversation becomes a bit one-sided--like you're just broadcasting an idea with no expectation that anyone is going to respond to it. I'm all about making connections and sharing my thoughts, but the larger the site's readership, the less welcoming that feels (at least to me).

  125. Ali Dent asked: Are there other ways to encourage readers that I really want to know what they have to say?

    My response: Great question, Ali! In the beginning, THE best way to get others to comment on your blog is to begin commenting on other blogs, particularly other newer bloggers. Those bloggers will often come over to your blog and repay the visit. It's a great way to begin to build up a more personal community of friends. Yes, it takes some stepping out of our comfort zone. But in reading various blogs, you'll be able to tell which other bloggers share similar intersts and those that could be potential friends. After a little time and effort of going out an meeting new people, you'll begin to have others visiting and leaving comments on your blog.

  126. Rowenna said: When there are 25+ comments, it starts to feel like your voice is lost in the crowd.

    My response: Rowenna, I totally agree! In fact, I'm sure you're thinking your voice is lost in this set of comments too! But I really think it all depends on the blogger. That's why as I mentioned in another comment above, it's important for the blogger to jump into the conversation from time to time to let the readers know they're listening! And I always love when commenters make a point of "talking" with each other within the comments. Feels like more of a discussion rather than a monologue! :-)

  127. Okay, Jody! You've convinced me to come out of hiding. Like the 17%, my usual excuse is the time thing. Just another reason to keep working on time management, because it's not just making comments, it's building relationships.
    Thanks and nice to finally introduce myself to you!
    Have a fantastic day!
    Kristen Johnson

  128. I'm scared of commenting.

    Which is silly of course. I want you to like me. A blogger can be like the kid at school who everybody wants to be friends with, or the person who walks into the room and everybody stops to say hi each wanting personal recognition.

    I'm the shy geeky kid in the corner.

  129. Nice to meet you too, Kristen! Thanks for commenting!

    And Kate,thank you for sharing your perspective too. I have heard others compare social media to school popularity contest. But I've found the online writing community to be truly warm and inviting, open to everyone! Especially on Twitter. I hope you'll find that too! :-)

  130. I don't catch up and spend time reading blogs unless I do have the time to comment. To me, commenting and interacting with other bloggers is an enriching experience and is central to the whole idea of blogging.

    I would love to encourage my readers to leave more comments, but I think that because so many visitors come from my Facebook link they feel it's not right to comment on Wordpress. Instead, I'll get comments on my link, messages in my inbox or sometimes texts to my phone in response to my post. I wish they'd leave them on my post though - it is more of a permanent record and if someone is searching my archives then the debate is still there ready to be picked up on and engaged with should the desire arise. Texts and emails are more temporary and if I'm the only one to see them then it doesn't promote the idea of a discussion (or argument!) with other people on the subject matter.

    This is a great topic for discussion. Thank you for bringing it up.

  131. I don't comment on every post I read, because while I'm a fairly quick reader, I'm a slow writer. I usually spend far too much time over what I want to say, how to say it, and sometimes revise a simple comment to death. Especially if the blog post meant something to me. But I do try to say something on the ones I regularly follow with some sort of frequency, so they know I'm still there and reading. And I've popped in on new ones and say something about how I found my way there (this one via Elizabeth Spann Craig's Twitterific link post) and some sort of reflection regarding the post.

    I wasn't going to say anything now because I wasn't sure what to say, but you challenged me to at least admit that. And I caught your comment to another commenter that you read comments from people even if they're a few days later, which I am right now. So hi.

    I suppose I can say I've followed someone back to their blog because they'd commented on mine. And anytime I see my follower count go up, I'm poring over the list trying to figure out who the new person is in order to see where they came from and how they might have discovered me.

  132. Hi Jaleh,

    I wasn't kidding when I said I read every comment, no matter how late it comes in! :-)

    I think that over time I've learned to be quicker with my comments (and even with writing my blog posts for that matter!). The more I practice, the faster I get. I hope that you'll find that to be true too!

  133. One of the reasons I avoid commenting at times is the simple fact that I feel silly--I don't want people to think I'm looking for trackbacks or posting useless comments just to provide traffic to my blog. I am selective with my commenting because I don't want people to think I'm traffic hungry or a loser who sits around commenting all day on blogs..maybe I'm wrong in thinking this way though. You provided an interesting challenge to me, as someone struggling to come to terms with an identity as a "writer." Talk about a wake-up call, am I (gasp) failing at my job by not commenting?

  134. Tiny Blue Lines, I wouldn't go so far as to say that you're "failing" at your social media game by not commenting! But I do think you could be missing out on a great part of the whole process of connecting that comes from comments! Hope you'll figure out what works best for you!

  135. This is great advice and information. I never knew and realized this stuff until now. I love commenting but it's also very time consuming to hop over all the blogs I read. Thanks for the eye-opener, Jody!

    1. Hi Livia,

      Thanks for stopping by! Yes, it is VERY time-consuming to visit other blogs and comment. But unless we JOIN in the conversation, nobody will know we're they're wanting to participate! Happy blogging!

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